In search of sustainability: how brands are developing successful strategies

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AUTHOR: Matt Ridout
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With a growing climate crisis and population to feed, food and beverage brands are facing the difficult question of how to produce more while impacting the environment less. The need to utilise our natural resources sustainably has never been greater, and on this podcast we look back at conversations we’ve had with three well-known brands who are putting sustainability at the heart of their organisations.

We speak to David Wilkinson, Senior Director Agriculture, PepsiCo Europe, Anna Pierce, Director of Sustainability, Tate & Lyle, and Katie Leggett, Sustainability Cheerleader, Innocent Drinks to find out how their brands are approaching their sustainability challenges in order to improve their organisations and supply chains. Join the conversation on Table Talk.

About our panel

Anna Pierce, Director of Sustainability, Tate & Lyle

Anna Pierce is the Director of Sustainability at Tate & Lyle, a 160-year-old business-to-business ingredient supplier. She is working to refocus the company’s sustainability programme on initiatives and partnerships that provide the greatest opportunity for positive impact in support of the its purpose – Improving Lives for Generations. She is leading Tate & Lyle’s efforts to infuse sustainability throughout the company’s operations.

Anna joined Tate & Lyle after spending her career in various Environment, Health and Safety roles at General Electric. She holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Environmental Science, a minor in Environmental and Occupational Science and Health, and an MBA from Gannon University. She also maintains accreditation as a Certified Safety Professional.

Katie Leggett, Sustainability Cheerleader, Innocent Drinks

Katie is the innocent drinks ‘sustainability cheerleader’ specialising in internal engagement and sustainability communications. Katie has worked with the WBCSD Sustainable Lifestyles team as well as in Corporate Responsibility reporting at ArcelorMittal. Katie joined the innocent sustainability team in 2014 and has since led their approach to human rights, made sure everyone at innocent has sustainability in their objectives and written innocent’s first ever ‘good all round’ report. Katie believes that – since a business is only made up of the people who work within it – it’s really important that sustainability teams invest time to make sure their colleagues are proud of, and can actively support, their company’s commitment to sustainability.

David Wilkinson, Senior Director Agriculture, PepsiCo Europe

David Wilkinson leads our Agricultural procurement team and is responsible for sourcing our direct agricultural raw materials across Europe and maintaining the relationships we have with our farmers – some extending 3 generations. Farmers are a key part of our business growing the crops that are at the heart of many of our core brands – whether it’s the potatoes that make Walker’s and Lay’s crisps, the oats that make Quaker, or the maize that make Doritos.

David has worked for PepsiCo for 21 years and was originally an engineer by training. He now leads PepsiCo’s team of agronomy experts across the Europe sector and oversees PepsiCo’s Sustainable Farming Programme. He is passionate about the role companies like PepsiCo can play in helping farmers to meet the challenges facing the food industry – from adapting farming techniques in the wake of changing climate conditions, to growing more crops using less water, energy and carbon.

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